Readers of the YDS Summer Bulletin will be familiar with Roger Nelson’s poetry and with his distinctive style of writing. This collection of more than fifty of his poems on a wide variety of subjects reveals the versatility of his metrical forms and his masterly command of the dialect of the area in which he was born and still lives – the border between the old West and North Ridings. His work includes an unusually rich diversity of dialect words and idioms, all deployed with the assurance and accuracy of a native speaker. Although he travelled to some of the remotest parts of the world during his professional career as a veterinary surgeon, his poetry is deeply rooted in his local and family heritage. His shrewd and sharp-eyed observation of nature and human life and of their interaction is central to his writing in ways which are both thought-provoking but also tempered by a characteristic optimism and wry humour. The collection reflects the author’s sense of place, of belonging, his awareness of the transience of life, and his admiration of the honest, hardworking countryman and woman, whose “Fewest needs breed modest content”. The book is illustrated throughout with his evocative drawings, and includes a helpful introduction and a glossary.
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